NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan will be elevated to Cardinal in Vatican City this Saturday. As Cardinal, that would make him eligible to elected Pope.

WCBS 880’s Rich Lamb On The Story

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Father James Martin, a Jesuit and author of books such as “Between Heaven and Mirth,” sees great importance in the Pope’s having selected Archbishop Dolan to give a talk this Friday before the entire College of Cardinals and the Holy Father himself.

“Well, in Vatican circles, that is quite a nod. I think that the Pope has chosen him for something like that shows the Pope’s great respect for him and Vaticanologists always look out for signs of Papal favor and who might a possible Papal candidate during the next conclave,” Martin told WCBS 880 reporter Rich Lamb.

Martin admires Dolan.

“One of the things I like about him is that he’s shows his faith through joy and he shows that being Christian means that you can have a sense of humor and enjoy yourself,” said Martin.

But does Dolan have a chance at being the next Pope?

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“Well, if you had asked me a few months ago, I would have said no, because he’s an American and that simply doesn’t happen and there’s a lot of suspicion internationally about the United States. Now, though, I’m not so sure. I think he has a pretty good chance,” said Martin.

He says Dolan combines orthodoxy with a sense of fun and appropriate playfulness.

Meanwhile, Dolan has built bridges that extend beyond the Catholic world.

Rabbi Joseph Potasnik, executive vice president of the New York Board of Rabbis, said when Dolan first arrived in New York City, he called the rabbi.

“So, he invited me and a number of others, to have breakfast with him and since that time, we have become extremely close. I have his cell number, and every so often we’ll talk to each other using the cell phones. He’s a real person,” Potasnik told Lamb.

Potasnik says it’s been great getting to know Dolan.

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“It is very, very important that we all feel included. Because, you know, when you’re a minority, you become somewhat paranoid. With Timothy Dolan, you realize you’re an equal,” said Potasnik. “I would describe him as il migliore tra migliore. He’s the best of the best. In Latin, it’s primus inter pares. And in Yiddish, he would be a mensch par excellence.”